September 10, 2015

Instagram, now fully monetized!

An announcement was made on the blog of Instagram yesterday and the post was titled "Instagram: Open to Businesses of All Sizes, Everywhere".

Key points to note in case you don't want to read through the whole post:

Advertising can now be done in a self serve manner.

Similar to Facebook and Google, small businesses can now book directly on the platform. This opens up opportunities for the thousands of small businesses who already use Instagram to gain a wider audience and increase awareness and subsequently sales. It also makes it easier for Instagram to earn revenue from these small businesses.

Advertisers now have access to new ad formats.

Advertisers can use landscape photo and video and 30s videos for better storytelling and more opportunities to exercise creativity. They even say something about allowing users to "shop for a product right from Instagram".

Advertisers now have better delivery and optimization tools.

This likely improves the targeting capabilities and allows for management of campaigns across both Facebook and Instagram. I've noticed over the past several months that Instagram has been working on improving their "suggestions" algorithms, learning from user behavior. Next step would be to marry advertising campaigns to Facebook and run campaigns across both platforms.

As a user of Instagram both as a regular consumer and as a business owner, I'm very excited to utilize Instagram as my main platform for e-commerce. The format already lends itself well to fashion/clothing businesses so opening advertising and adding buying functions will likely help drive growth for small businesses.